Nation of Domination

The Nation of Domination (NOD) was a professional wrestling tag team in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) from November 17, 1996 to November 28, 1998.

Nation of Domination
The late 1997/early 1998 incarnation of the Nation, from left to right: Kama Mustafa, Faarooq, The Rock, and D'Lo Brown.
Motto: "By Any Means Necessary"
Stable
MembersLeaders:
Faarooq (leader, 1996–1998)[1]
Rocky Maivia/The Rock (leader, early 1998)[1]
Members:
J.C. Ice
Wolfie D
Owen Hart[1]
D'Lo Brown[1]
Kama Mustafa/The Godfather[1]
Crush[1]
Savio Vega[1]
Mark Henry[1]
Ahmed Johnson[1]
Name(s)The Nation of Domination
The Nation
NOD
Thugs
Billed fromNew York City
DebutNovember 17, 1996
DisbandedNovember 28, 1998
Years active1996–1998

The group was formed by newcomer Faarooq in 1996 and remained an influencing faction in the company. While in the group, The Rock was a one-time Intercontinental Champion[2] and D'Lo Brown was a two-time European Champion.[3]

History

United States Wrestling Association (1996)

The original Nation of Domination was formed in 1996 in the United States Wrestling Association (USWA). The group was led by PG-13, (a tag team consisting of J.C. Ice and Wolfie D). Additional members included Kareem Olajuwon, Sir Mohammad, Elijah, Brakkus, Shaquille Ali, Randy X, and Queen Moisha. Faarooq (Leader) Kareem Olajuwon, Sir Mohammad, Elijah, Randy X, Queen Moisha, PG-13, Albert Armstrong, Charles Hines, Richard Beach and Clarence Mason with D'Lo Brown & Crush were part of the first nation in the WWF Following their debut in November 1996 as a Pro-Black Militant Faction [1]

World Wrestling Federation

First NOD in WWF (1996–1997)

A separate group named Nation of Domination was the heel faction formed in the WWF when wrestler Faarooq was joined by manager Clarence Mason. The two men were also accompanied by three actors, Albert Armstrong, Charles Hines, and Richard Beach, whose names were unacknowledged on screen and were supposed to represent other members of the Nation. The group was based loosely on the Nation of Islam (with group members adopting Islamic names and wearing Muslim headgear) and the Black Panther Party. The extremism of the group's pro-black theme at times including the "Nation Salute" and Faarooq's angry tirades on the microphone garnered them an excessive amount of heat from fans in arenas. Many wrestlers joined the heel stable over time including PG-13 (J.C. Ice and Wolfie D), Crush, D'Lo Brown, and Savio Vega. Their first feud was with Ahmed Johnson, who had a rivalry with Faarooq since SummerSlam. At the Royal Rumble, the Nation assisted Faarooq during his match against Johnson. Faarooq lost by disqualification after Crush interfered and attacked Johnson.[4][5]

Faarooq, Crush, and Vega were the members of Nation of Domination who wrestled while others supported them during their matches. These three men often teamed up together in six-man tag team matches such as one at In Your House 13: Final Four against Bart Gunn, Goldust, and Flash Funk[6] and most notably in a Chicago Street Fight at WrestleMania 13 against the Legion of Doom (Hawk and Animal) and Ahmed Johnson.[1][7] At A Cold Day In Hell, the Nation faced Johnson in a Gauntlet match. Johnson defeated Crush and Vega in the Gauntlet before losing to Faarooq.[1][8]

JC Ice and Wolfie D were removed from the Nation after a loss to the Legion of Doom, the Nation effectively abandoning them to their fate. Faarooq became angry with the rest of the group and fired the entire Nation with the exception of Brown[1] after Faarooq's loss to The Undertaker at King of the Ring, where Faarooq lost the match partly because of the distraction caused when Vega and Crush were arguing at ringside.[9]

Black Supremacy and The Gang Warz (1997–1998)

On the June 16 episode of Raw Is War, Faarooq promised that he would deliver a "Bigger, Badder, Better and Blacker" version of the Nation, after "firing" Crush, Mason, and Savio Vega, retaining only Brown.[10] This led to the induction of Kama Mustafa and Ahmed Johnson into the group after Johnson turned on then WWF Champion The Undertaker during a tag team match against Faarooq and Kama.[10] Johnson would be forced out of the group due to a legit injury. He was replaced by Rocky Maivia.[1] Meanwhile, former Nation members Vega and Crush formed their own rival factions, Los Boricuas (made up entirely of Puerto Rican wrestlers), and The Disciples of Apocalypse (made up entirely of white biker wrestlers) respectively. This led to a WWF style "gang war".[1]

In the following months, the Nation feuded with Los Boricuas and the Disciples of Apocalypse. This feud culminated in a triple threat match between Faarooq, Vega, and Crush who were the leaders of Nation, Los Boricuas, and DOA respectively at Ground Zero, which Vega won.[11] They restarted their feud with the Legion of Doom, whom the Nation defeated at Badd Blood: In Your House in a 3-on-2 handicap match.[12] As part of his heel turn, Rocky Maivia shortened and changed his ring name to The Rock. Around this time, Ahmed Johnson restarted the feud with the Nation as well and joined the Legion of Doom and Ken Shamrock. This led to a Survivor Series match at Survivor Series, which the Nation lost to the Legion of Doom, Johnson, and Shamrock.[13] At D-Generation X: In Your House, The Rock got a shot at the Intercontinental Championship against Stone Cold Steve Austin. In the closing minutes of the match, Austin performed a Stone Cold Stunner on the referee. A second referee came down to count a pin for Austin, although the first referee intended to disqualify Austin.[14]

As a result of this controversy,[14] Austin was forced to defend the title against The Rock the next night on Raw Is War. Rock was awarded the Intercontinental Championship, however, after Austin forfeited him the title instead of defending the title in a rematch, delivering a stunner on Rock and took the championship belt back afterward. Austin appeared the next week on Raw is War, taunting Rock and eventually throwing the Intercontinental Championship belt over a bridge, into a river.[15][16] Ken Shamrock, who was already a rival of the Nation, began feuding with The Rock for the Intercontinental Championship. On the January 12, 1998 episode of Raw Is War, Mark Henry turned heel and joined the Nation, by assaulting his tag team partner, Ken Shamrock, in a tag team match against The Rock and D'Lo Brown.[17]

Leadership of The Rock (1998)

On the March 30, 1998 episode of Raw Is War, the night after WrestleMania XIV, The Rock went on to usurp leadership of the Nation from Faarooq, at which point the group permanently dropped "of Domination" from its name and its militant focus.[1][18] Instead, The Rock's gimmick spread throughout the faction with Nation members taking on considerably more hip characters, the most notable being Kama Mustafa's transformation into The Godfather, D'Lo Brown's "bobble-head" and strut, and a new hip version of the group's entrance theme, that would become associated with The Rock's character and be remixed over and over during the years to become his current theme. The Nation's primary focus by now was that The Rock retained the Intercontinental title "by any means necessary", which was the group's motto. They mainly feuded with Faarooq, who had just been kicked out of the stable. At Mayhem in Manchester, The Rock and D'Lo Brown lost to Ken Shamrock and Owen Hart.[19] At Unforgiven: In Your House, The Nation lost to Shamrock, Faarooq, and Steve Blackman in a six-man tag team match.[20] On the April 27 episode of Raw Is War, The Rock and Mark Henry faced Shamrock and Hart in a tag team match that saw Hart attacking Shamrock and joining the Nation.[21]

The group then engaged in a rivalry with D-Generation X (DX), which saw the infamous parody DX performed in which they spoofed Nation members; Rock thoroughly humiliating Chyna by alluding to a possible romantic encounter between the two while the rest of DX were held at bay in their locker room by a forklift; a street fight between the two groups that wound up in Triple H being, in particular, singled out by the rest of the group and being beaten down with a ladder after Southern Justice interfered with the match on the Nation's behalf; the ladder match for the Intercontinental Championship between the two at SummerSlam; and X-Pac and Brown trading back and forth the European Championship.[22][23] The Nation and DX also wrestled in a six-man tag team match at Over the Edge: In Your House, which the Nation won.[24]

Fall of Nation (1998)

Toward the end of the year, the group showed signs of dissension as Rock's mannerisms and swagger began to catch on with fans. This would lead the WWF to turn The Rock face. Hart left the group when he "injured" Dan Severn following a botched reverse piledriver on Raw Is War the night after Breakdown. The incident was a mimicry of the legit incident in which Hart injured Stone Cold Steve Austin using the same move a year earlier. The guilt from the injury to Severn led Hart to "retire", but then re-surface as The Blue Blazer, effectively ending his affiliation with the Nation. The Godfather would venture out on his own as a fan favorite, bringing with him a bevy of beauties to the ring before his match with any wrestler. Rock would later be assaulted by Brown and Henry in October 1998 which would ultimately be the end of the Nation as a faction. After kicking Godfather out of the group on the Sunday Night Heat episode before Judgment Day: In Your House, Brown and Henry briefly continued using the Nation name, a modified Titantron, and music until dropping all three by year's end as they moved on to the tag team division without the Nation moniker.

Aftermath

Shortly after the Nation was disbanded, The Rock decided to run solo, riding his immense rise in popularity. He won the WWF Championship at Survivor Series[25] and turned heel again by joining Mr. McMahon's Corporation faction.[26] He would later become one of the greatest superstars in WWF history and he would subsequently enjoy several years of success, not just in the world of wrestling, but also in Hollywood. He retired from professional wrestling in 2019.[27] Owen Hart would go on to form a successful tag team with Jeff Jarrett, and later revive his Blue Blazer character before his death in May 1999.[28]

D'Lo Brown and Mark Henry would remain a tag team following the dissolution of the Nation, enjoying moderate success. After Brown attempted to help Henry lose weight, Henry turned on Brown in the summer of 1999, ending the final remnants of the Nation of Domination. Brown would eventually hold both the Intercontinental and European titles at the height of his popularity. Henry would form his "Sexual Chocolate" character and would later be awarded the European Championship by Jeff Jarrett later that year. Henry would also go onto win the ECW World Heavyweight Championship and the World Heavyweight Championship later in his career. The Nation had something of a reunion in late 1999 when D'Lo realigned himself with The Godfather, imitating his pimp gimmick. This alliance lasted all the way into early 2000, when D'Lo turned on The Godfather, thus ending the tag team. The Godfather would later win the Intercontinental and World Tag Team Championships in the following years.

Former leader Faarooq would also find success after the group's dissolution, going onto to form the highly popular tag team the Acolytes Protection Agency (APA) with Bradshaw. The APA would later win the World Tag Team Championship three times before disbanding in 2004.

As of now, The Rock, Faarooq, Henry and Godfather are the only former members still employed by the WWE. Rock is signed on a part-time basis, Faarooq makes occasional appearances under his real name of Ron Simmons since his 2004 retirement, Henry works backstage after his retirement in 2017 and Godfather was released in 2002 and retired to manage a gentleman's club; he still occasionally makes guest appearances in WWE. Brown was released by WWE in 2003, but was rehired in 2008; he was let go once again the following year. Faarooq, Godfather and Henry were inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2012, 2016 and 2018 respectively.

Members

USWA

WWF

Incarnations

Championships and accomplishments

References

  1. "Nation of Domination (N.O.D.) Profile". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved May 11, 2008.
  2. "WWE Intercontinental Championship official title history". WWE. Retrieved May 11, 2008.
  3. "WWE European Championship official title history". WWE. Retrieved May 11, 2008.
  4. "Royal Rumble 1997". PWWEW.net. Retrieved May 11, 2008.
  5. "Royal Rumble 1997 official results". WWE. Retrieved May 11, 2008.
  6. "In Your House 13: Final Four". PWWEW.net. Retrieved May 12, 2008.
  7. "WrestleMania 13 official results". WWE. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  8. "In Your House XV: A Cold Day In Hell". PWWEW.net. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  9. "King of the Ring 1997". PWWEW.net. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  10. Petrie, John (June 16, 1997). "Raw is War: June 16, 1997". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on May 21, 2001. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  11. "In Your House: Ground Zero". PWWEW.net. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  12. "In Your House: Badd Blood". PWWEW.net. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  13. "Survivor Series 1997 official results". WWE. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  14. "In Your House Degeneration X". PWWEW.net. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  15. Petrie, John (December 8, 1997). "Raw is War: December 08, 1997". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on October 26, 2006. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  16. "The Rock's second Intercontinental Championship reign". WWE. Retrieved May 12, 2008.
  17. Petrie, John (January 12, 1998). "Raw is War: January 12, 1998". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on May 21, 2001. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  18. Petrie, John (March 30, 1998). "Raw is War: March 30, 1998". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on February 9, 2008. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  19. "Mayhem in Manchester results". The Other Arena. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  20. "Unforgiven 1998 official results". WWE. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  21. Christopher Robin Zimmerman (April 27, 1998). "Raw is War: April 27, 1998". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on May 21, 2001. Retrieved May 13, 2008.
  22. "D'Lo Brown's first European Championship reign". WWE. Retrieved May 12, 2008.
  23. "D'Lo Brown's second European Championship reign". WWE. Retrieved May 12, 2008.
  24. "In Your House: Over the Edge". PWWEW.net. Retrieved May 15, 2008.
  25. "Survivor Series 1998 official results". WWE. Retrieved May 15, 2008.
  26. "Corporation Profile". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved May 15, 2008.
  27. "The Rock's Bio". WWE. Retrieved May 15, 2008.
  28. "Owen Hart & Jeff Jarrett Profile". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved May 15, 2008.
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